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Post-draft haul: 20 rookie free agents; two veterans

Posted Apr 28, 2009

CHARLOTTE -- Tuesday afternoon, the Panthers supplemented their seven-man draft class by agreeing to terms 20 undrafted free agents, a group that includes five offensive linemen, four linebackers, three defensive tackles and a long snapper.

Carolina also added a pair of veteran street free agents: wide receiver Marcus Monk and guard Justin Geisinger. Monk (6-foot-4, 212 pounds), was a seventh-round pick of the Chicago Bears in last year's draft after becoming Arkansas' all-time leader in touchdown receptions (27). He was in camp with the Bears and later the New York Giants, but was not with a team during the regular season.

Geisinger (6-foot-2, 315 pounds), a four-year veteran, was with the Washington Redskins last year, for whom he played four games before suffering a season-ending knee injury on Dec. 7 at Baltimore. He broke into the league as a sixth-round pick of the Buffalo Bills in 2005, then spent the 2006 season with Tennessee before moving on to Washington's practice squad in 2007 and its 53-man roster the following year.

UNDRAFTED ROOKIE FREE AGENTS
NO.NAME POS.HT.WT.COLLEGE
16Larry BeaversWR 5-10 167 Wesley
86Kevin BrockTE 6-5 255 Rutgers
78Patrick BrownOT 6-5 303 Central Florida
76Gerald CadoganOT 6-5 310 Penn State
14Hunter CantwellQB 6-4 236 Louisville
18Jason CheryWR 5-10 185 La.-Lafayette
32D.J. ClarkCB 6-1 200 Idaho State
71C.J. DavisG 6-2 308 Pittsburgh
60Marlon FavoriteDT 6-1 317 LSU
62Keith GrayC 6-2 294 Connecticut
61Lonnie HarveyDT 6-3 342 Morgan State
48Anthony HeygoodLB 6-1 225 Purdue
54Mortty IvyLB 6-1 239 West Virginia
55Mike JuergensLB 6-3 230 Wyoming
75Justin KershawDT 6-4 271 Michigan State
22Jamall LeeRB 6-1 225 Bishop's
46Brit MillerLB 6-0 243 Illinois
29Anthony ScirrottoS 6-0 202 Penn State
40Nick SundbergLS 6-0 245 California
65Garry WilliamsOT 6-3 296 Kentucky


BACKFIELD

Louisville's Hunter Cantwell (6-foot-4, 236 pounds) will be the only rookie signal-caller at Carolina's minicamp. The Paducah, Ky. product started a pair of games for the Cardinals in each of the 2005 and 2006 seasons -- including the 2006 Gator Bowl -- but spent the majority of his first three seasons backing up Brian Brohm, a 2008 second-round pick of the Green Bay Packers.

Cantwell
Quarterback Hunter Cantwell. (PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES)


Cantwell became U of L's starter last fall, completing 221-of-377 passes (58.6 percent) for 2,493 yards and 16 touchdowns against 16 interceptions.

The only runner among the class of undrafted signees is Jamall Lee (6-foot-1, 225 pounds), a product of Bishop's University in Lennoxville, Quebec. Lee followed a standout college career by clocking a 4.39-second 40-yard dash at the Canadian Football League's evaluation camp last month. He ran for 1,093 yards in 2008, good for a 136.7-yards-per-game average on Bishop's eight-game slate. Lee, who averaged 6.7 yards per carry in 2008, also becomes the first Bishop's product to sign with an NFL team in 14 years (Mark Hatfield, Miami Dolphins, 1995).

PASS-CATCHERS

The two wide receivers signed by the Panthers, Wesley College's Larry Beavers (5-foot-10, 167 pounds) and Louisiana-Lafayette's Jason Chery (5-foot-10, 185 pounds), bring extensive return experience. Beavers is the NCAA's all-time leader in touchdowns on kickoff returns, finding the end zone 10 times in his career. He added three scores on punt runbacks -- all last year -- for a total. His 39.5-yard average on kickoff returns led Division III last year; he also averaged 29.2 yards on 13 punt returns. He scored on 26.7 percent of his total returns last year (eight of 30) and added another six touchdowns on 30 receptions.

Chery was the Ragin' Cajuns' primary kickoff returner last year, averaging 21.7 yards on 44 returns with one touchdown. He also had 46 receptions for 656 yards and seven touchdowns as a senior, completing a career in which he grabbed 106 passes for 1,379 yards (13.0 average) and 11 scores.

Rutgers product Kevin Brock (6-foot-5, 255 pounds) is the only rookie tight end added to the Panthers' roster this year, as the team bypassed the position in the draft for the first time in three years. Brock ascended from walk-on status as a freshman to starter by the end of his career, and finished his four years at Rutgers with 49 receptions for 541 yards and four touchdowns -- including 26 for 300 yards and two scores as a senior. Included in his career tally is a 15-yard fake-field-goal touchdown catch against then-No. 2 South Florida in 2007; the score proved decisive in Rutgers' 30-27 upset.

OFFENSIVE LINE

After drafting one offensive lineman -- Oklahoma guard/tackle Duke Robinson in the fifth round -- the Panthers added five undrafted free agents up front.

Center Keith Gray (6-foot-2, 294 pounds) started the last two seasons for Connecticut after suffering a shoulder injury that caused him to miss the final 10 games of the 2006 season. He went into that season as the Huskies' starter and started the final 31 games in which he played, beginning with three first-team assignments at the end of his freshman campaign. Gray's work helped running back Donald Brown -- the Colts' first-round choice -- lead the nation in rushing last year.

Guard CJ Davis (6-foot-2, 308 pounds) started alongside Jeff Otah on the University of Pittsburgh's offensive line in 2006 and 2007 and remained there last year before moving to center after first-teamer Robb Houser suffered a season-ending injury. Davis started 43 consecutive games for the Panthers and earned first-team All-Big East honors last year.

Offensive tackle Patrick Brown (6-foot-5, 303 pounds) was a four-year starter at left tackle for Central Florida who was a first-team All-Conference USA choice in 2007 and a second-team selection as a senior. Brown never missed a game for the Golden Knights; his 50 consecutive starts at left tackle represented the nation's longest streak at that position.

Cadogan
Offensive tackle Gerald Cadogan. (PHOTO: ASSOCIATED PRESS)


Former Penn State offensive tackle Gerald Cadogan (6-foot-5, 310 pounds) replaced Levi Brown -- the No. 5 overall selection in 2007 -- at left tackle and provided a seamless transition for the Nittany Lions. He earned first-team All-Big Ten honors last year and was an ESPN Academic All-American in each of the last two seasons. Cadogan was also one of the fastest at his position in this year's class; his 40-yard dash time of 5.12 seconds at the Combine was fourth among O-linemen.

Garry Williams (6-foot-3, 296 pounds) manned the left tackle slot for the last three years at Kentucky, twice earning second-team All-Southeastern Conference honors (as selected by the coaches). Williams only allowed one sack as a senior.


DEFENSE


DEFENSIVE LINE

Favorite
Defensive tackle Marlon Favorite. (PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES)


Marlon Favorite (6-foot-1, 317 pounds) started 17 games over his career for LSU, including seven at right defensive tackle as a senior. Favorite had two sacks and 3.5 tackles for losses last year and finished his career with four sacks and 8.5 tackles for losses.

Morgan State's Lonnie Harvey (6-foot-2, 342 pounds) was a key component of a defense that led the Football Championship Series (formerly Division I-AA) in total defense, allowing 213.4 yards per game. Harvey logged 28 tackles -- including 5.5 for losses -- a sack and a forced fumble last year.

Justin Kershaw (6-foot-4, 271 pounds) became a starting defensive tackle for Michigan State in his sophomore season and remained there for the rest of his Spartans career, eventually starting 34 of the 49 games in which he played. Kershaw posted career highs in tackles for losses (eight for 25 yards) and sacks (three for 17 yards) as a senior; in both of those statistics he at least doubled his collective tally from the three previous seasons.

LINEBACKERS

Anthony Heygood (6-foot-1, 225 pounds) led Purdue with 114 tackles last year, the most for any Boilermaker in six years, to go along with six tackles for losses, three passes defensed and one interception. In 2007, he had 15 tackles for losses and 81 total stops while earning honorable mention All-Big Ten honors. His teammates also voted him Purdue's Most Valuable Player last season.

West Virginia's Mortty Ivy (6-foot-1, 239 pounds) was a first-team All-Big East selection last year after amassing 90 tackles (including six for losses), and three interceptions while playing the middle and strongside slots for the Mountaineers. Ivy was a full-time starter in his junior season; that year he had six sacks, 11 stops for losses and three forced fumbles.

Mike Juergens (6-foot-3, 230 pounds) broke into Wyoming's starting lineup as a junior -- starting six games -- and remained there last season, notching 56 tackles and five sacks from his outside linebacker slot in 2008. Over the last two years, he logged eight sacks and 102 total tackles, including a 10-tackle, one-forced-fumble game against Boise State in 2007.

Brit Miller (6-feet, 243 pounds) reunites with his former Illinois teammate J Leman, who signed with the Panthers earlier this offseason after being in the Minnesota Vikings' training camp last year. Miller led the Big Ten with 11.27 tackles per game last season, finishing with 132 total stops -- including 15.5 for losses -- over 12 games. He also logged six sacks -- two more than his total from the previous three years combined.

SECONDARY

Idaho State cornerback DJ Clark (6-foot-1, 200 pounds) became only the second player in his school's history to pace the team in interceptions in four consecutive seasons. He picked off 15 passes over the last four years -- including five as a senior -- and also broke up 22 passes, including a career-high eight last year.

Scirrotto
Safety Anthony Scirrotto. (PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES)


A two-time first-team All-Big Ten selection, Penn State's Anthony Scirrotto (6-feet, 202 pounds) finished fifth in school annals with 12 interceptions, including five in his junior season. Scirrotto logged 61 tackles, two interceptions and five passes defensed during his senior season, when he helped lead the Nittany Lions to a conference title and Rose Bowl appearance.


SPECIAL TEAMS


Long snapper Nick Sundberg (6-feet, 245 pounds) began handling that duty for Cal-Berkeley in his first game as a true freshman in 2005 and held the position for the next four seasons. Sundberg will be one of three long snappers at minicamp, joining J.J. Jansen and Patrick McDonald. Jansen was acquired in an April 13 trade with the Green Bay Packers; McDonald, formerly of the CFL's Calgary Stampeders, was signed to a reserve-future contract in January.